Fascial Health for Athletes and Movement Therapists
Understanding the nature of fascia and learning how to manipulate it is valuable for every athlete and movement therapist. Fascia is made of many different types of connective tissue. It binds and holds all of your many parts in place. Each person’s fascial fabric tells a story about the type of movement patterns and trauma that that individual has experienced over their lifetime. Holding patterns that have been adopted through out our connective tissue, to support our unique history of activities, invariably change our posture over time. Often these shifts in tension through out the fascia change how our bones articulate at joints. This shift in skeletal alignment often leads to muscular weakness, poor balance, toxicity, impeded circulation and joint pain.
Most athletes stop playing their favorite sports because of problems with their joints. The repetitive movements they have done thousands of times to master their skill, over time, create imbalances in their body. By working specifically with the fascial network we can re- align bones at joints and re-establish a natural, pain free movement once again. Athletes who practice yoga can continue to practice their passion long after others have had to retire.
All styles of yoga manipulate and stimulate the fascial network. It is the reason that so many yogis look younger than they are and the reason that many yoga practitioners live to a ripe old age. Yin Yoga, is a style of Hatha yoga, characterized by long relaxed holds, that is extremely effective when looking to influence how your fascia shears with adjoining tissues. It is incredible for creating space at joints, changing your posture and relieving chronic pain due to skeletal mis-alignment.
Yin yoga is accessible to everyone, regardless of age or physical condition and you don’t need to be a yoga teacher to integrate some of these techniques into the stretching regimen you use or with your clients. Many of us now are working with an aging population. Yin Yoga is gentle, easy to control and is a very good way to help seniors keep moving and to minimize the discomfort of arthritis.
Healthy fascia leads to better balance, increased proprioception, improved circulation, reduction in joint pain, more fluid movements, increased strength, better flexibility and facilitates the detoxification process. Our energetic level is also determined by the health of our fascia. Through out the fascial matrix each individual stores energy potential. Keeping this network pliable is the key to remaining youthful, vibrant and strong.
Yet another benefit of practicing Yin Yoga is the mental strength that develops. Patience, tolerance, perseverance and mental endurance all improve dramatically when working the body and mind in a Yin way.
A Yin Yoga Teacher Training is a great way for Personal Trainers to deepen their understanding of how to influence the fascial net. The course if only 40 hours and your clients will thank you for it!